Plaid leader urges public consultation over threat to front counter services at Caerphilly Police Station

17/10/2018

Plaid Cymru is demanding public consultation over plans which could mean residents being prevented from accessing front counter services at Caerphilly Police Station.

In a letter to Gwent Police & Crime Commissioner Jeff Cuthbert, Councillor Colin Mann, leader of the Plaid Cymru group on Caerphilly Council,  has called for an assurance that public access to the station will continue. It was only just over a year ago that the station was officially opened after £310,0000 of public money was spent.

Councillor Mann also complains that he was surprised that the Gwent Police and Crime Panel, which met on September 28, was not told of the review by  the force  of front counter services at stations.

Councillor Mann wrote: “I am writing to you in connection with the recent publicity concerning the Caerffili town police station.

“Could you please clarify the future of the station?  Does it have a future?  Statements from the force say that the station will stay open but that a review of the front counter service is taking place.  I assume that this will be across the force area.

“This is a particularly worrying development especially bearing in mind that the present station was opened at a cost of over £300,000 a very short time ago – the fourth location for a police presence in the town.

“The statements made so far do not confirm that the public service will continue.  Will you be making a statement to re-assure the public?

“If the front door is locked to the public who may, or may not, be able to speak to an officer via using the outside phone, it will certainly be regarded as shut by the public.  I do not believe that this is the sort of service that was promised when the station was opened a very short time ago.  Is it right that the biggest town in the county borough is left without a public facing service?

“I am also surprised and disappointed that there was no mention of a review in the Police and Crime Panel meeting that took place only a couple of weeks ago.  Surely this could have been mentioned in that meeting.  I feel that other members of the panel will share my disappointment at an apparent lack of transparency. 

“Could I also raise the question of consultation.  Surely a decision of this sort should not be made at least until members of the public have been allowed to express an opinion.  Will this be done?

“As I said at the start of my letter I believe that clarification is needed and this should take place as a matter of urgency.

“Thank you for your attention.  I look forward to an early response.”